Drama Watch: Upcoming Terrific Cdramas

I have done my homework and calculations, these few have absolutely no chance of failing me.

1. 北平无战事/All Quiet in Beijing (60 episodes)

Year 1948,  last leg of the war between the parties claiming right to rule the nation.  Communist spies deep undercover permeating KMT have the mission of annihilating the corrupted money trail supplying gold to Taiwan…a target is the bank our hero’s father is running.   On another front, students are demanding their own rights and freedom, fighting their own fight in the line of fire.   Same PD is Battle of ChangSha Mr. 孔笙, from the writer of 大明王朝1566 /Da Ming Wang Chao 1566 aka you have not seen the most brilliant imperial cockfighting/intrigue until you see this.  This is starring  刘烨 (23 when he won his Golden Horse lest we forget)、 陈宝国 (Our Ming Jiajing Emperor, our Emperor Wu of Han of easily the most terrific C historicals produced) 、焦晃 (KangXi Emperor in YongZheng Dynasty another on my best Cdrama list)、倪大红(Qiao’s Mansion, New 3 Kingdom)、王庆祥(ZYZ’s Papa/Sifu in WKW’s The Grandmaster)、廖凡 (freshly won Best Actor Silver Bear at Berlinale playing a scary scary man, but here the nerdy professor)、董勇(Black Hole <3) … I can go on.  Mind is blown, what obscene budget do you drama peeps have in CN?!?!?

2. 琅琊榜/Nirvana in Fire.  PD 孔笙 again.  Everything trickling out from that production is exactly my thing, my aesthetics.  Please be Awesome.  I need one fantabulous ‘idol’period before I feed that genre to the sharks

Have a fanvid of HuGe as hero Mei ChangSu:

I love how every BTS is soothing my eyes with all the intricate props and coordinated harmonious coloring.

Even side characters are properly costumed.

I am not sure how I feel about the chemistry of the OTP, this is quite noona romance from the looks of it.  But romance does not play a large role in this being awesome, I trust.

王 凯/ Wang Kai (left) was eye-catching handsome in the trailer of All Quiet in Beijing already, I won’t be surprised he steals some of HuGe’s thunder here.

I mean I will forever have a soft spot for HuGe, but he has never wow’ed me irrevocably in one super terrific job.  That is why I can not wait for him to slain me gloriously in all the angst of his Mei Changsu here, at 17, the teenager was wrung through the horror of war fighting by the side of his father, their army unexpectedly schemed and obliterated and he cheated death, assumed new identity, plotted his revenge, aided his prince…then died a super glorious death on the battlefield as his mind is set on how the traumatized young boy, his old self, should.   Don’t get me wrong, I think he is all-rounded solidly good but just missing that tiny explosiveness, the little abandon, certain something.  I can always see the seams of his acting…when it is my peeve exactly to notice the effort.   I do not care for him in comedy where he tends to OTT, I insist his face is made for Angst and Melancholy!  He is currently in the talk of the town 生活启示录/Sheng Huo Qi Shi Lu, venturing out from his usual idol dramas, and this is more slice of life modern adult romance trendy atm, playing the much younger hottie love interest of a middle aged preggie divorcee played by one of the top notch working C actress  闫妮 / Yan Ni who can convince you with every character she does. Her line reading must be the best of the industry like melted drips of gold precious to ears.   He is quite good in it, but I just do not think he has the comedic timing and he is trying too hard, coming off a hint hammy.  This is not a rec, I’ve dropped it myself after a few episodes, it has its bright moments, but other than the OTP, everyone else is insufferable.

This is our world when C dramas are giving us the hottest smooches in Asia everywhere I look.  It is bizarre!

Lady breaks in the middle of smoochinga HuGe and asks the silly lightbulb to go, ‘Call the cops.’

 

3.  四十九日•祭/49 Days of Sacrifice.

…While the fangirl world will be spazzing all over the hot and grimed HuGe.  I am all for serious C war dramas to throw in the bone for us very shallow meek whims, which will swarm the channels with the stupid Chinese Dream propaganda in effect by SARFT ran by a bunch of mental morons, to cast all the super pretty idol boys who can decently act and are aging finely, put them in uniforms and angst, dying glorious deaths, draining all our tears.

 

My bet is on Song Jia and Zhang Jia Yi and PD  张黎 carrying the show to all its glory.  I think Song Jia is almost at Maggie Cheung’s caliber of nuanced awesome at the same age, she is NEVER bad, and at the top of her game currently winning all the awards, she does not attach herself in anything not worth her time now.  Zhang Jia Yi is one of the best, I would argue he is better than Chen Dao Ming because he can scrub all of his big name heft and play a nobody.  Any drama he touches, gold, and he touches lots with wide variety.  PD is responsible for two of my favorite Cdramas.   It gives me comfort and more confident with writer Yan GeLing adapting the script herself.

 

4.  /World of Plainness/Ordinary World.

I am taking a break from the novel (because I am distracted by the very pretty Wallace H, so so soooo shallow me) , but it is page turning perfect.   tbvh, if Loverboy did not come up with something kickass awesome, both drama, and his job in it, I will cheat on him with brighter sparkling hot men.  I am such a cruel fangirl there is nothing I can do about it.  Thank goodness this looks very promising.  ShaoPing’s solace and pleasure in his dreary harsh life is books, and that gives him all the miraculous hope and strength to brave his world, be it when he is a dirt poor student, a coal miner, and repaying society as a fine teacher, through life’s little joys and sadistic tribulations.  You do not get more textbook leit motif stoking SARFT to purr like a happy cat depicting the positive Dream of China it listed as a theme, a criteria for all dramas broadcasted the rest of the year than this so I am sure once this has wrapped and ready, it will be promptly on the tele.

 

The PD is keeping my hopes and expectations so high with all the bts he is posting.  Look how rich and gorgeous this is, every snap has a lovely story to tell:

 

YH’s ShaoPin and his OTP looking exactly like the untainted unadorned young romance of that bygone era:

 

4. 红高粱/Red Sorghum 

When you are anticipating a drama with ZHOUXUN and the rising leading man Zhu YaWen (and Huang Xuan) in something as high profile as Red Sorghum, from the PD of Legend of Zhen Huan, good news it will get a swift air date.  Bad news, it is still slow ass speed September, I NEED IT NOWWWW!

It is very hot here. Very.

5. 你照亮我星球/You Light Up My Star

Joe and Janine are playing 2 actors, star-crossed, and it is their story criscrossing as they rise to stardom.

The previous 4 dramas I am betting my head and limbs they would be 8/10 and above.    This one, a TWdrama, I can not be as sure,  PD Winnie rubbed me wrong with In Time With You, but this already owns my heart with the 20+ min trailer and I am bunching it here in brute force, hoping, willing it to be as good as its company above.    It is almost 10 years since ISWAK, and I have not seen JoeCheng in anything worthy since.  TBTP, you owe him one!  WHAT A FREAKEN SHAME.   He has talent, he is not perfect, nor very skilled but a natural the camera loves him and his imperfections, and he is infectious.   Let him be in something deserving his charisma, we fangirls need it to not break our hearts yet again just for a JoeCheng fix:

Arjoe shippers are projecting this as their story.  I do not see it myself, Joe is named a character away from Tony Leung and Maggie Cheung for Janine,  but it is another level of intrigue inserting their RL persona.

But I won’t be surprised they would cheekily insert a running gag on the ArJoe They Kissed Again kisses in their dramas within drama:

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33 thoughts on “Drama Watch: Upcoming Terrific Cdramas

    1. If im levelheaded enough it is perfect as I would be crazy about Battle of Changsha till Aug and come Sept i can dive in Red Sorghum, in the mean time YH’s secret passage is rumored to be airing though i have little hope that would be terrific, not passing chance droolzing at him in uniform.

      Butbutbut i still want RedSorghum nowwww!

        1. I bet it should be quite an event, as long as it goes on satellite in one of the big name cables, which r the only place able to afford the rights, it would be in HD, it is when it is just out on a local tiny ‘ground’ channel that is a strike of luck on quality of vid

  1. Do Cdramas like these get subbed in English? I am more familiar with Korean and Taiwanese subbed dramas so I guess I am not sure where to watch dramas from China. They look so interesting. Hope to get to see at least one or two of them. Thanks for sharing .

    1. I have seen subs for the very popular Cdramas at viki? I pray and hope these few would catch the fansubbing teams and be subbed because there is much more to the idol wuxias Cdramas r much better at, but then it may not be interesting to a younger audience. It is a harder feat to sub a Cdrama I guess, the average length is around 40 eps, even for fluff and when it is a period, it can go up to 70, 80 eps easy.

        1. DMY is a different beast, it is messing w all the sensitive nerves even with all the name changes to tone down the pooping on history, esp now with the civil unrest in that region. I would be jawdropped shocked it will see the daylight before that social tension is smoothed out. So good luck to its fan but just let it go.

          This production company has the critical acclaim and clout to get its stuff broadcasted, just on the fact the quality of its production has been truly top notch all along, the shabby TangRen is no match.

  2. yessssssssssssss yesssssssssssss highly anticipated
    刘烨 is seriously my bias right now lol, his rank in my heart have now risen above yuan hong (im so sorry for the betrayal lololol)
    if you like 刘烨,then you gotta watch 蓝宇~~~well watch the cut version if you don’t really like kinky stuff LOL, he’s honestly one of the best actors in the chinese entertainment circle and even though his face isn’t traditionally handsome, but he has a lot of 灵气 especially in his films pre 2006
    yep im now a diehard fan of 刘烨 and im so glad you mentioned 北平无战事 because 刘烨’s works are usually not commercially popular (except for his dramas), but in order for him to rise to the level of stardom as 黄晓明陈坤, he NEEDS a commercially successful piece of work.
    yeaaa…as someone who watched 12 of his films in 3 days, yea im kinda crazy right now lmao

    1. Oh long time LiuYe fangurl here! 😀 https://mookiehyun.wordpress.com/2013/03/14/old-steady-ships-part-2/

      His edge over a HXM is he has the acclaim, he never set eyes on being a star and tbh he has been picking weird movies not doing much honing what he has naturally a HXM would pay a limb for, last thing i seriously love him in it ( and the drama itself) is 血色浪漫 . Im glad he is filling into more manly a bode but still has that manboy sparkle in his eyes. Obviously I’m an eye girl, u have those v large pretty talking globes, I’ll flail!

      1. yessssssssssssss omg his eyes are actually beautiful and tbhhhhhhh i watched 蓝宇 for HuJun because he has the most ideal body ever lolololololol
        idk man he’s been doing some weird movies lately, like the one with 姚晨?A rom-com?? really??? AND don’t forget those big budget “flops” he was in like 10 years ago (无极 and 满城尽带黄金甲), I think he’s still searching for fame? just not in a very intense manner
        just read ur post and i might need to start a 火华社 fanclub lol. 刘烨 has so little online presence…even if his weibo gained popularity, he’s still not as popular as his..ex girlfriend LOL.
        idk man but once i knew 刘烨 dated 谢娜, i knew that he wasn’t that much of a sensitive soul we all assumed he was lol, they spent 6 years together, and because of him, 谢娜 can speak in fluent northerner dialect… so yea imagine the effect 谢娜 had on him
        also this might sound really weird but im glad that 谢娜 broke up with him…i saw a couple of his old interviews with 谢娜 and tbh he seemed really controlling and kinda cray cray…
        but nevertheless he’s great in movies and dramas!

        1. I do not care that much about RL persona, I have a very lax bottomline, as long as you are not a rapist nor a murderer, your privacy is your own thing.

          AND I do strangely love it more when I see an actor as a character and his RL persona is opposite of that, that is blingbling talent.

          He is actually gaining tonnes of goodwill now that he has been savvy in promoting himself on weibo, in reality shows, there is one upcoming I am so eying where he is taking some cutest grandpa thespians on a trip to France, it should be cuteness overload. I would argue even though he may not be profitable a draw to insert in big budget movies as a full on A lister, he actually has a higher likeability as HXM/CK, just may be not as popular with the International fangirls. I think he was too proud and stubborn and a perfectionist to a fault, started off such a high ground w LanYu can get into ur head, and the stress to keep up the gd work. I think last few years, after settling down, he has loosen up and compromise, thus the out of sorts commercial picks. I dont think it is just fame he is seeking w 满城盡带黄金甲 and the likes, he did nit possess a shrewd vision and taste in picking projects, must have thought these are worthy things big shot directors to be attached to.

        1. Good things: both the uncles did great jobs. The bad, which had become a too common occurance w this team: scriptwriting is not good enough for the talent involved.

            1. NiF is ranked at the lowest of SY productions i have seen in scriptwriting, Love Me if You Dare is not better. Ode to Joy will be stinku too scriptwise, lesigh.

              I liked BoC the best, but my folks loved a few more than BoC like 生死綫,父母愛情…

              1. I have not watched the last two dramas you mentioned, but NiF was enough to get me into Shanying and found BoC. I was actually surprised to see Shanying branching out to the modern dramas through LMIYD. I personally don’t find it that bad (I hope you won’t hang me for this, but I’m a big Wallace fan and this is a few of his works that I actually stand watching). I haven’t watched Ode to Joy either hehe. I really want to watch the dramas you recommend because you seem to have a great taste in dramas that are somewhat aligned with my taste.

                1. I just skimmed a few chapters of Ode to Joy and it is horrifyingly insufferable. If u can read Chinese, there is a slang in vogue best describing the talented uncles of ShanYing: 直男癌 . Inasmuch id rather they dun waste it and just stick w what they r gd at, slice of life human drama of the normalfolks, 父母愛情 is exactly such. It loops me in effortlessly and before long i had no leisure to nitpick there is say no WallaceH pretty faces, nor fluffy romantic hives. LMIYD is quite good only when compared to other such crap of CN idol shoujo modern, but the actress is the first time i have ever witnessed SY picking someone so incompetent for role, on top of there is no chemistry btn WH and her. NiF the novel/scripting is also just simply not gd enough thus wasting such a grand team. Again, of course it is better than most of the period fluff out there but for SY and PD H to be so megalonomous as to claim this is a proper historical… bleurgh

                  1. I think LMIYD can still compete with many other Chinese, Korean and Taiwanese rom-coms and crime dramas. I find Shan Ying’s drama quality to be pretty high — from its sets, actors, directing, music and editing. The scriptwriting, I can more or less agree with you. LMIYD is not really tight on that one, but it is also not insufferably unwatchable like many other rom-coms. Although I do agree that when you compare it with BoC, LMIYD lose on the scriptwriting, although not the acting. I actually like the actress and think she has chemistry with Wallace’s character there! She has this soft nuance about her and she does not overreacts. I think that she has a nice balance between her character and physical appearance. But welps, that may be just me. Ahaha and as for NiF, I still think it’s a fun watch. I’m not sure about the historical aspect of it cause I can’t really pin point which period it is (I think it’s in the warring states period, but that’s just a random guess based on the clothes lol), but aside from that, NiF is actually fun. There are some aspects of it that seems stupid (Prince Yu trusting Mei Chang Su wholeheartedly or Prince Yu suddenly having a mommy/daddy issues), but is in fact a very human thing to do. Mei Chang Su’s words and reactions are also very convincing and there really isn’t a way to rebuke the stuffs he says, especially when the King questions him if he is indeed Lin Shu. And as “horrible” as the script is, NiF actually comes up to par with its Korean mega sageuk hits counterparts like Empress Ki, I even think it is now better than Six Flying Dragons, which has started to slow down considerably. I think Shanying is trying to become more “commercial” and try to have more “relativity” amongst younger viewers and as great as slice-of-life dramas are, not many people are interested in it, especially in modern times. NiF has this balance and LMIYD is more catered for people who needs a light watch.

                    1. Really?! You would call LMIYD a romcom?! And NiF ‘fun’? The tension and pace was quite horrifyingly all over the place in both and i find the case solving /storytelling not laid out w any intricacy at all. I won’t call what the actress did as nuanced, it was one note and it could just be my peeve on plastic surgery done meh: her double eyelids made her eyes funkily bloated + circle lens too huge hindering her eyes to passably emote for my taste. I also bumped into her crying in a latter ep… gosh it was painfully forced and green i cringed. I dun care for WH line reading esp, he has to work seriously on his bobbling head mannerisms and his tone/TW accent gave his Simon, this supposedly cold aloof weirdo, too much unsuitable yet robotic warmth/sass/cutesy.

                      We have to agree to disagree. I gauge a drama as truly worthy on almost strictly the script alone, everything else r only icing on cake. I might at times lurve some silliest fluff but never would i disclaim such whimsy as true quality. NiF’s script is unworthy and it was nowhere near brilliant or as i see it bizarrely stupid esp w any crucial plot point where scheming politicking of any of the antagonist should give a tete a tete for MCS per my expectation…that never happened once! while MCS has this tptb all seeing all knowing superpower with no backstory at all, it just wasnt anything worth my time engaging brainwise. Needless to say Princess Ki/Six Dragon is no way worthy of a mention in anything worth my time XD
                      But why compete with utter unworthy trash?! Fact is even if it is better than most/all shiz does not negate these r nowhere near the overrated greatness ShanYing is ambitiously selfpromoting atvm… yet i had witnessed this production company steadily creating respectable quality human drama in every aspect for 10,15 years. Yes SY’s quality is highest in CN, but without a good script, everything is built on a foundation of drama-tofu. Screw commercialization if it dampers on quality. PD H and H had miserable taste lvl in trendies picking flaccid works that would need miracles i thought only they could garner writing wise, but sadly they put all eggs/budget on everything else but bright drama adaptation writers… alas, i read them wrong.

                    2. It’s half romcom half crime. The rom-com elements are also high enough for other rom-com viewers to like this. I find her plastic surgery to be okay, there are worse cases and I don’t agree with you on WH (may be because I love him too much), but, his accent is bearable (better than being dubbed) and his acting is pretty good in here. I find his accent to be thicker in BoC than in LMIYD, although I never really have a problem with people speaking Chinese in Taiwanese/ Fu Jian accent as long as it is not too thick.
                      I really wouldn’t call SFD or EK “trash”, they’re quiet good and as bad as they are, I don’t see any other dramas that could match up in terms of balancing out relativity with good scriptwriting.
                      I personally think our gauge is different, I look at a drama as a whole, while you think everything else other than scriptwriting are only the icing. I am, however, curious to which dramas you would call “exceptional” other than BoC. I find the pace to be pretty okay, although I am guilty of skipping scenes that disinterest me.
                      I agree that the lack of backstory to MCS is a plot hole, however, I was a lot more interested in Prince Jing than MCS. Although, I find the way he easily topples his enemies to be pretty disingenuous. I would call NiF a fun watch, it wasn’t a heavy drama although it is political. I think NiF, from the King’s perspectives flows back to the typical slice of life drama. We can see his growth/decline as a human/king, which is why I love the king so much more than any other character although the ending of his character did irks me up.
                      And even though Shan Ying produces good slice of life dramas, they are also known to not get airing time slots and are not as high sought until BoC and NiF gain public recognition.

                    3. I do not have a problem w accents until it hampered the characterization. In BoC WH managed to reign in his habits more, being much more on guard and a case of self-doubt leading to improvement. I also could buy the explanation of his accent being a Southerner (and Mandarin was not yet official language) plus boarding school. Simon is a role he could sleepwalk and give a passing grade and he clearly is too lax on himself, coming across too chirpy/playful/lax with his accent (i would bluntly say sleasy at times) with a robotic delivery i know is his trying at hinting on the genius IQ cold prince aloof which doesnt add up to doing it for me. He looks the part, and is not bad, but far from his best job. I am scrupulous when i want to attempt my own logic in some crime solving and when he speaks TW mando to some US psychiatrist instead of even thickly accented chinglish given the construct he is a brilliant US college prof, there is just so much i can suspend belief.

                      Your read on my assessment on dramas saddens me in too simplistic. I had a favorite drama page here on this blog you can make reference. It is just that without the foundation of a good script, there is no good drama to even discuss upon. I never said the acting is not good in NiF, i do agree with most it is all around solid, but lacking the crucial backbone of good writing, the actors could act circles and to the moon and it would be trivialized in my pov without true substantiating story/characterization thus my lamentation coz just because the most crucial element is missing, everything falls apart when i choose to put on my most critical nitpicking as none of the actors r in my biases.

                      LMIYD is shoujo romance + quasi crime thriller (quasi since i see not much thrill nor tension in pace of storytelling), there is not a sniff of com(comedy) unless we are counting the v cheesy humanly impossible lines WH’s Simon uttered and we sat through trying to laugh off the secondhand embarassment.

                      Nah, NiF has no element of slice of life anything, if you meant King as in DaddyEmperor of Liang, he was closer to a buffoon of an incohesive characterization off bat imho. I could go on for days on ranting on silly illogical writing fails in NiF, one of the earliest ones it breaks my heart to lol at: if emperor was truly this weary old cunning suspicious fox, could some not too secret LaYangCourt with such (why and how?!) wuxia teen protege FeiLiu be allowed to survive all these year to give rise to a holier than holy MCS huh?! And that craptastic tagline of some top master list Get a MCS and Own the World as if some top secret a not too bright prince could get hold of ie should be screaming to old fox emperor who annihilated his elite army just on projected future threat to his throne… as some uber hit list of Kill! Them! ALL! Yet he let show festered like one of us audience. Further down the plotwhatplot we r told emperor has been masterminding the 2 princes to fight as to balance them off… yet we start drama off w one prince hiring an assassin to truly off the other. That must be Daddy’s plan too making so much sense, not. I could go on but it would be too unkind. I never said NiF could not be an enjoyable ride for many with its other worthwhile elements, but drama on the whole is missing a truly bright script as if everything else is to gloss over, cover up the fact this story begs all these distractions to fake its grandiose. Not blinding me. If the cut of meat is not top quality, no amount of flawlessly saucing it up will do.

                      I have stopped watching popular K saguek almost entirely (yes i still give them an ep then deemed them trash for too many failing aspects). Last ones i have watched in entirety and not a waste of my time: Conspiracy of A Court, Cruel Palace. Watch those instead and lets chat more on worthy dramas of our time! Life is too short!

                      It is not true SY did not get much air time until BoC, NiF. BoC actually didnt get the treatment of hit drama with no syndication on cables (where money’s at) thus not really considered the unspoken gauge nowadays of a nationally broadcasted hit drama. I did not passionately love anything SY did this year, even though it had its most commercially successful hits… so any gains for me? On the contrary, I am in the red for watchable dramas (for me), weeping in losing a production company i could depend on quality writing, the rarest beast.

                      SY had 大染坊,闖東關 etcetc earning national drama status of both popularity and critical acclaim even i have heard of long before BoC, NiF.

                    4. Maybe I could be wrong on the SY part because I just heard of it and heard people say that they have quiet a hard time in getting air time. But, on your NiF, I agree that the acting of the entire casts is a lot better than the script itself. I guess, I watch more things more for the fun of it and I like that NiF have the balance of things. If we were to talk, people change a lot as they age, 13 years ago, he still wanted to rule and a coup frightens the shit out of him because he took the throne in a coup himself. But now, he’s had enough of them all, he wanted to rest and finally give his son the throne, so I guess that’s why he got a lot “softer”.I think the whole Lang Ya Hall and the Jian Zhuo alliance being let go by the king is because he doesn’t want to make them his enemy. If I’m not mistaken, the pugilist world is a “free country”, so it’s not his and not others too, if the king was to make them his enemy, his real enemies will team up with the pugilist world who have a large network fully integrated to societies in different countries and a lot of skilful swordsmen. Liang would definitely not survive from that mess so it’s better to have a more lax attitude towards them. As for how MCS got so much power is pretty much explained. He became the heir of Jiang Zhuo alliance from the former Chief. I don’t think they even knew Fei Liu was alive and good at wuxia, and MCS was depicted as a more power and money hungry Chief than Lin Shu. They thought he died, so not checking up on him makes sense.
                      As for the check and balance, that’s quiet true even to our today’s politics. One wanting to oust the other isn’t necessarily a bad option for daddy too. None of them was birthed from the queen, so, everyone has the same amount of rights to be the king even though one is positioned as the crown prince (but if the consort with 8 something to par with the queen, a 7 pearled prince could also par with the crown prince lol). Being able to kill his brother would actually make the king scared of his own son but also impressed by his son’s capabilities to get the right person to do the right job. The “kill them all” command was also not unfounded. There was a report, asking for help because there was a coup, and there were also 70,000 capable men from the best line of troops ready at the other general’s disposal, if there was really a coup and they made it to the capital, there would really be a coup. It would have been the right decision if there was a real coup to kill the army when they were tired and wounded.
                      I guess we just see the different side of things. :p
                      From your list, I really cannot stand Zhen Huan but loved BoC, and I have never heard about the rest of them. I tried to look for the ones that I’m interested in from your list, but I couldn’t find the subs for them 😥

                    5. It is exactly the balance of things that I am nitpicking with SY lately. I’d rather they be a master of their niche as they had been for 3 decades now than a hohum jack of all trades. This is a child’s play at historical intrigue at best, the scheming is laughably not up to half my usual standard in just the handful of C historicals I cared to watch being never an aficionado.

                      Your take on MCS is exactly my gripe. We are told lots about him, but never shown. This medium of storytelling is still a drama form where visuals and sounds are crucial, yet the production opted out of skimming through all the crucial storybuilding or climatic scenes and often just laid it out lazily with an ‘I told you’. That is not gripping me at all.

                      Can’t teach an old dog new tricks, I do not see a hint King Liang ‘softening’ up, if he was as you said laid back waiting for the passing on his throne to a son and be done with it…he would not pitch his sons against each other to the degree of sitting back as some spectator in a coliseum and watching them kill each other like gladiators, that makes no sense a father would anticipate sucha show and inasmuch to ‘judge’ their capabilities and be impressed accordingly?! Plus that assassin is so halfassed pathetic I do not know where to begin my snark. True, historically war of the roses amongst princes happened too often, but the DaddyKing be encouraging and mastermind behind?! Gimme a break. And he is counting them off when they are too ambitious as in seeing them as a threat to HIS rule. Congruent much?! Nope. He does not come across to me letting down any guard at all, and in the novel LinShu/MCS was to be in hiding for these 13 years in fear of King hunting him down so for him to be this so blatantly showy of all his MCS godly power and vast networking and still the King let him and only anything about him slide yet anally suspicious over his own kin, bizarre. And this is the same King to just let the pugilistic world run loose?! And just the thought of LinShu must be dead would never equal to him truly dead to someone that would stage such brutal murders on his own army killing them all with a MCS gaining power. What if MCS, lets pretend he is so not LinShi, is scheming a coup?! If he could cunningly frame his 70000 good men as scheming traitors against him, he could flick a finger and comes up with something to paint them in necessarily nefarious light and disarm some LangYa Hall. It just does not round up to a reasonable characterization unless he suddenly got senile dementia and lost function of his brain, which is not the case either.

                      I jokingly throw in the Kill them All as the masters on the list of LangYa should be viewed by King as a hit list of offing them all and it makes no sense to me he would be so afraid of stepping on their toes and let them be. Afterall he is this ruthless thing murdering 70000 of his own fine men just because of a suspicion then framing them as organizing a coup against his throne. To ask me to suspend disbelief this is a King that has softened as he grew older while still having silly suspicions over nothing and not even having a guarded sense of alarm over the rise of a MCS, is bizarrely dumbing down a character plus incohesive. Bottomline, I do not see King Liang as worthy nor smart enough to stay on his throne and be some mastermind of schemes…which he should be, at least if he was a worthier opponent of hero, it would reflect on building a more convincing MCS for me instead of all fanboy shouty praises left and right.

                      Anyway my point is, even as not a well read C periods casual audience, I have seen loads of better written historical of this genre that needs not tonnage of dissection of whether any character is bright enough. And in NiF case none are.

                    6. yeah, if I were to critic, I would agree with you. But maybe I was watching as a watcher and somehow it slipped my mind that they didn’t actually “show” but “tell”. :p
                      About daddy Liang and Lin Shu, I didn’t know what happened in the novel and that there was this small backstory about him fearing daddy Liang. :O It was never shown in the drama and yes I would agree that it would have changed a lot of the things happening in LYB the drama, but maybe it wasn’t such a strict adaptation either. The public LOVES to see a revenge drama where someone weak being killing by a stronger man ends up taking his revenge by becoming stronger. I kind of share this opinion where MCS just seems to get his way a bit too easily. Like, they’ve been fighting for 10 years, and now that a new character comes in, they don’t even know that they’re all being eaten alive. Or maybe because they got too comfortable in their fight that when shitstorm happens, all they care to think of is the other party doing it and not a new character? Idk, it could happen in a long cold war.
                      And back to daddy Liang, I still think the check and balance system he imposes is a great method to get the court in line and his throne in line as well. When two princes are fighting both needs to look good in front of daddy Liang so everyone is too busy fighting for each other and not him who is currently in the throne as he was who preferred to fight the real “enemy” aka grandaddy of Liang. I don’t actually think he “judge” their capabilities by making them go through bloody fights like a gladiator. I think it is more or else to train the crown prince by making prince Yu thinks he has a chance at the crown (he actually did if he didn’t mess up in the end. More than daddy Liang, prince Yu’s change of cool headedness feels more bizarre to me). The crown prince was always doted and was groomed by a “slutty” consort. He doesn’t really know how to rule and the king knows this so he pitch him against Prince Yu. In court, he still asserts his rule and puts a stop at things when they get too far. Although now that you mention it this way, it bothers me that he doesn’t know about MCS either. But again, he lives in the forbidden city, so might not know about him unless someone informs about it.

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